A child needs to possess certain skills to contribute to their development and interact with their kindergarten teachers and classmates. These skills are generally picked up during what is referred to as the executive function level of development. In adults, these skills help us plan and prioritise our day, control our emotions and actions, adapt our behaviour and reactions to changing situations, and engage in abstract thinking.
In children, these skills are generally grouped into three major areas that contribute to our little one’s development, understanding of the world, and overall happiness. Having cognitive flexibility allows a child to be mentally agile enough to change their thinking about different topics easily. Having many different interests is encouraged at Raintree and part of the wonder and fun of learning. Inhibitory control allows young students to control their emotions and impulses. By gently replacing the causes of these impulses with positive reinforcement, disruptive outbursts are gradually reduced. The third skill is possessing a working memory that allows the child to temporarily store and retrieve information on topics that interest them. This allows them to discover the joy of sharing with their friends and taking part in a lively and fun discussion.
The time it takes to reach the executive function level of these three areas can vary widely in different children. Educators have learned that environmental factors can also facilitate or hinder a child’s development in these areas. Nevertheless, at Raintree, every child will be supported and warmly encouraged to do their very best to grow and develop to attain these skills.
Our teachers act as gentle, nurturing observers of your child’s development. By taking the children in a kindergarten class through a daily schedule of activities, our teachers can rate the development level of each child and provide parents with written reports for them to review. Children can also get special attention, help and encouragement to develop their skills based on these reports.
The happy and busy atmosphere of a kindergarten classroom is the ideal environment to observe and work on the development of executive function skills. As children don’t all develop at the same pace, kindergarten provides a forgiving, low-pressure environment for the teacher and child to work on a one-to-one basis to develop their skills. This one-on-one, gentle training is known as an intervention.
These interventions are done in such a way that the child never gets the impression that they’ve done something wrong, because they haven’t! They’re doing what comes naturally. Development is a normal part of growing up. Some develop faster than others, but everyone reaches the same milestones with a little support, help and encouragement from their teachers. These interventions are simply a method of achieving the balance of the skills a child will need to take part in, contribute to, and enjoy every minute of their kindergarten activities, and prepare them for the school years ahead.
Physical activity also plays a part in interventions. It keeps them fun and exciting, and it’s something they can do with their friends. These activities include aerobic exercises and organised sports, and group activities that focus on cooperative learning and dramatic play. This approach works well for teaching skills such as problem-solving, taking turns, and being able to actively listen.
Importance of a Stress-free Environment
A child’s development can be encouraged with a supportive educational environment and the availability of fun and exciting learning resources.
Stress can affect a child, and their intellectual performance, throughout their life. It’s vital to recognise this in a child early, when it can be effectively dealt with. The effective reduction of stress can work wonders in increasing a child’s focus and development level. One of the most promising treatments that reduces stress and increases executive function development is mindfulness training. This practice involves steadily and gently bringing the child’s attention to the present moment. Teachers at Raintree use breathing exercises, positive reinforcement and body scanning, which focuses on each part of the body in a type of meditation that promotes relaxation.
A Nurturing Environment
Every child comes from a different home environment and has a different history and influences that may affect their pace of development. But the wonderful thing about the kindergarten environment is that it’s a place where a child can lose themselves in play, exploring the world around them and interacting with their classmates. Each child can feel appreciated and valued in a kindergarten class experience.
The Raintree kindergarten programme is designed to offer students the ideal nurturing, friendly, and active environment to develop their skills without any pressure. Our teachers take their time to fully understand any problems your child might have before creating a programme that addresses them.
Raintree International School
It’s natural to want to find the best British school in Thailand for your child, whether that’s an international nursery or kindergarten. Raintree International School offers your child an experience that combines the British curriculum with a Reggio-inspired educational philosophy. This philosophy fosters communication and creativity in the development of each child and their unique abilities.
The healthy child-to-staff ratio at Raintree assures parents that their child will receive the warmth, encouragement and attention they deserve and that they will be provided with every opportunity to develop their intellect and skills.
Our early years practitioners are all highly qualified with teaching degrees from respected and recognised institutions. In addition, they all receive professional development courses on an on-going basis to ensure they stay up-to-date on the latest developments in early years education.
If your child is nearing their primary school years, and you want to provide them with the best preschool and kindergarten environment, make an appointment to visit Raintree International School, centrally located in the Sathorn area of Bangkok.